„The mention of Greece fills the mind with the most exalted sentiments and arouses in our bosoms the best feelings of which our nature is capable.“

—  James Monroe, Message to Congress (December 1822)
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James Monroe2
1758 - 1831
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„Nobody, I believe, will deny, that we are to form our judgment of the true nature of the human mind, not from sloth and stupidity of the most degenerate and vilest of men, but from the sentiments and fervent desires of the best and wisest of the species.“

—  Robert Leighton 17th century Archbishop of Glasgow, and Principal of the University of Edinburgh 1611 - 1684
Theological Lectures, No. 5, "Of the Immortality of the Soul", reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 514.

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„Most of us do our best not to think about death. But there’s always part of our minds that knows this can’t go on forever.“

—  Sam Harris American author, philosopher and neuroscientist 1967
Context: Most of us do our best not to think about death. But there’s always part of our minds that knows this can’t go on forever. Part of us always knows that we’re just a doctor’s visit away, or a phone call away, from being starkly reminded with the fact of our own mortality, or of those closest to us. Now, I’m sure many of you in this room have experienced this in some form; you must know how uncanny it is to suddenly be thrown out of the normal course of your life and just be given the full time job of not dying, or of caring for someone who is... But the one thing people tend to realize at moments like this is that they wasted a lot of time, when life was normal. And it’s not just what they did with their time – it’s not just that they spent too much time working or compulsively checking email. It’s that they cared about the wrong things. They regret what they cared about. Their attention was bound up in petty concerns, year after year, when life was normal. This is a paradox of course, because we all know this epiphany is coming. Don’t you know this is coming? Don’t you know that there’s going to come a day when you’ll be sick, or someone close to you will die, and you will look back on the kinds of things that captured your attention, and you’ll think ‘What was I doing?’. You know this, and yet if you’re like most people, you’ll spend most of your time in life tacitly presuming you’ll live forever. Like, watching a bad movie for the fourth time, or bickering with your spouse. These things only make sense in light of eternity. There better be a heaven if we’re going to waste our time like this. Sam Harris, "Death and the Present Moment", speech at the Global Atheist Convention (April 2012) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITTxTCz4Ums&t=17m52s

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„Nature is our kindest friend and best critic in experimental science if we only allow her intimations to fall unbiased on our minds.“

—  Michael Faraday English scientist 1791 - 1867
Context: I have far more confidence in the one man who works mentally and bodily at a matter than in the six who merely talk about it — and I therefore hope and am fully persuaded that you are working. Nature is our kindest friend and best critic in experimental science if we only allow her intimations to fall unbiased on our minds. Nothing is so good as an experiment which, whilst it sets an error right, gives us (as a reward for our humility in being reproved) an absolute advancement in knowledge. Letter to John Tyndall (19 April 1851); letter 2411, edited by

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